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For the first time, a film primarily shot in Ventura County could win the Oscar for 'Best Picture'

Krists Luhaers

Most people don't know it, but 'Everything Everywhere All At Once' and 'The Fabelmans' had major portions shot in Ventura County.

It’s a little known potential first for Ventura County.

Two of the ten movies nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture were primarily shot in Ventura County. Could the county be getting an Oscar?

Film historian Harry Medved said Everything, Everywhere All At Once and The Fablemans had major portions shot in the county.

In the case of Everything, Everywhere All At Once, a Simi Valley office building served as an IRS building which was a key part of the movie. It was once the Countrywide Mortgage Building, and is now an Amazon office complex.

Medved said Simi Valley Town Center, a movie ranch, and a park in the Simi Valley area also played roles in the movie.

The movie The Fablemans also shot in multiple locations in Ventura County. Moorpark’s High Street Arts Center was one of the locations used.

Medved says Ventura County has a long running role in the movie industry.

The Oak Park resident takes us on a walk on a trail behind Oak Park High School. He points to some nearby peaks, which have served as the background for films for decades.

"This is Simi looks a little desert-like," said Medved.

The area appeared in a number of Westerns, including some John Wayne movies. The hills have been stand-ins for landscapes in Utah, and Texas. In fact, so many westerns were shot in the area that there was a herd of cattle which had recurring roles in films.

The film historian, and spokesman for The Cinema Foundation, said in recent years, the county has been home to shoots for movies like The Aviator, Little Miss Sunshine, and Once Upon A Time In Hollywood.

Medved says it’s also become a popular place for people in the industry to live. He’s organizing an industry social group.

"I'm hoping this will be the kickoff for something I'm calling the Conejo Entertainment Group...we'll meet for wine-tasting and things like that. It's just a free, unofficial networking group," said Medved.

While the county has been in many movies over the decades, it’s never been in a Best Picture winner primarily shot in the County. What does Medved think about the two films chances?

"I think we have our best chance ever to win an Oscar this year for Ventura County," said Medved. "I don't think people in Ventura County are even aware of it, and I think it's going to be Everything, Everywhere All At Once."

There are some Best Picture winners that have had a few scenes shot in the county. They include It Happened One Night, which was partially filmed in Thousand Oaks, and Gone With The Wind, which had scenes shot in Ahmanson Ranch. But, Medved believes we'll see a big win for the county on Sunday.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral. 
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